"Welcome to the ramblings of another artist's adventures."

Friday, July 13, 2012

Writing an artist's statement...

   I've been working on writing a Bio and an Artist Statement, two different things, so I've read.  I was reading about how to write an artist statement, what's entailed... I find it difficult to write about myself, praise myself, basically sell myself or my work to someone else.  The article that I read on how to write one, stressed being truthful about what you say, amongst other things.  I've read lots of statements by other artists.  Some I can't understand because they are so full of nebulous words or seem to have no 'real' content about the artist at all.  Others are overflowing with all the various shows and/or awards that they have received that I'm done before I start, not that those aren't good to know too, but I think those should be stated in a Bio.
  Ultimately, I feel like I am bragging or something.  When someone comes over, I either feel like a little kid,  and show off what I'm working on or mostly, self-conscious and ignore my work altogether (which is out in the open for all to see). It's like I'm embarrassed or something.  Why?  I've never heard anyone say, "oh that's crap" (maybe they save that for behind my back, lol), or, "why did you do that?", in a mean derogatory way.  In fact most of the time, they want to know how I did something. Or, they might say, "wow, that's a lot of work, or tedious...or that's really great".  So, what's the big deal?  Has anyone else had this dilemma?

   As far as my Interior Design goes, I had someone today want to know if I had a website (working on it) or a portfolio...uhg! I should have one.  I've designed so many tile installations for people over the years you would think I would have thousands of photos. I have only a smattering. Who's fault? Mine...
The potential client wanted to know, basically, why she should pick me to do designs for her.  So there I am, having to tell someone why I am so great, pick me!

   I remember a painting teacher I had years ago who said that there are two types of artists; those who create merely to create and those who produce solely to sell.  I've been primarily a creator, and thus, usually a giver of gifts.  I do love that.  I enjoy sharing what I make and giving things to others.  I feel like I'm giving a little piece of myself, rather than say a gift card...something anyone can do. Handmade gifts have always seemed more personal to me.  I suppose not everyone feels that way about receiving that type of gift.  I guess some people prefer a standard present from the local box store.  Anyway, I've have come to realize the need for both types of artists...endless gift giving creations don't pay bills...So, I'm on a mission.  An artist's mission of both producing art for pleasure and also for potential earnings.  A mission that years ago, I said I could never do.  Never say never, right?  Hence, the need for an artist's statement.

   Not sure where the journey is going, but I'm on the bus.  It's a slow bus too.  So far, I have discovered that I am happiest when I'm creating something...anything. A good thing to know about myself for this journey.  One obstacle that I have is responding to this simple little question- "are you an artist?",
and being honest and not embarrassed by saying, "yes, I am."  Really, I don't know why I have such a problem with that question.  What stigma is attached to it?  Not a worthy profession?  Saying I'm an artist, is not a bad thing.  There are so many great talented people now and in the past...So, what's up?

  So far on this bus, I joined our local art museum...again.  I was a member once before, but I was always to chicken to enter any shows.  I only participated as an art teacher and also took my kids there so they could learn about art.   I am planning on entering a show coming up...another reason for the dreaded statement.  It's a slow bus, and I'm a work in progress.
   Definitely ramblings of this artist...

1 comment:

  1. I know what you mean! I cannot seem to get to grips with the artist's statement either and the blank space on the application form just gets bigger as I look at it... It helps me to remember that it is just a required genre, like a CV - although it is a personal statement, it is not "really me", only a presentation of me. And if I sound stupid, well, so do a lot of other people!

    Incidentally, have you had an opportunity to enjoy some of the automatic artist's statement generators out there? My favourite is this one.